The Hanscom Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program reinforces the Air Force's commitment to eliminate incidents of sexual assault through awareness and prevention training, education, victim advocacy, response, reporting and accountability. The Air Force promotes sensitive care and confidential reporting for victims of sexual harassment and assault and accountability for those who commit these crimes.
Sexual harassment and assault are both criminal conducts. They fall well short of the standards America expects of its men and women in uniform. Specifically, it violates Air Force Core Values. Inherent in our core values of Integrity First, Service before Self, and Excellence in All We Do is respect: self-respect, mutual respect, and respect for our Air Force as an institution.
Our core values and respect are the foundation of our wingman culture -- a culture in which we look out for each other and take care of each other. Incidents of sexual assault corrode the very fabric of our wingman culture; therefore, we must strive for an environment where this type of behavior is not tolerated and where all Airmen are respected.
Sexual Harassment, Assault and Consent Defined
A form of sex discrimination that involves sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct.
Intentional and unwanted sexual contact (or attempts) characterized by use of force, threats, intimidation, abuse of authority or when the individual does not give consent or is not capable of giving consent.
"Consent" is defined as words or overt acts indicating a freely given agreement to the sexual conduct at issue by a competent person. An expression of lack of consent through words or conduct means there is no consent. Lack of verbal or physical resistance or submission resulting from the accused's use of force, threat of force, or placing another person in fear does not constitute consent. A current or previous dating relationship by itself or the manner of dress of the person involved with the accused in the sexual conduct at issue shall not constitute consent.
Eligibility for Sexual Harassment Advocacy Services
Active duty Airmen, Guardians, and Reserve service members are eligible for Restricted or Unrestricted Reports.
- Air National Guard members are eligible when in a federalized status.
- Service members who have not filed a Military Equal Opportunity (MEO) complaint with the installation EO office, retain the option to file a Restricted Report for sexual harassment with the SAPR Office.
- Pre-existing MEO sexual harassment complainants are eligible to elect an Unrestricted Report of sexual harassment and can request victim advocacy services with the SAPR office.
Department of the Air Force civilians, service member dependents, and retirees may be eligible to use EO complaint process for allegations of sexual harassment but are not eligible for Restricted or Unrestricted Reporting or advocacy services through the SAPR office. Below are service-specific sexual harassment or EO hotlines for appropriate referrals:
- Army: 800-267-9964
- Coast Guard: 888-992-7387
- Marine Corps: 703-784-9371
- Navy: 800-253-0931
Sexual Harassment Advocacy Reporting Options
Restricted Report: This reporting option allows a service member to confidentially report sexual harassment to a SARC or SAPR VA and receive victim advocacy services from the SAPR office. This reporting option does not trigger an investigation or notification to the service member's command or installation EO office, unless there is written consent from the service member or if there is a clear and present risk to health and safety to the service member or another person, as determined in consultation with the servicing legal office.
- SARCs and SAPR VAs will inform victims of sexual harassment that sharing information about the sexual harassment incident with individuals other than those covered by a legal privilege (e.g., chaplains, victims’ counsel (VC)) may initiate an official inquiry or investigation and may impact the victim’s eligibility to make a Restricted Report.
Unrestricted Report: This reporting option allows a Service member to report sexual harassment to a SARC or SAPR VA and receive victim advocacy services from the SAPR office. This reporting option will result in the SARC or SAPR VA notifying and conducting an in-person, virtual or telephonic referral with the Service member's commander and installation EO office to initiate an investigation (or clarification report via EO processes) of the sexual harassment allegation(s).
Eligibility for Sexual Assault Advocacy Services
Unrestricted and Restricted Reporting Options are available for:
- All service members and their dependents over the age of 18
- AF civilian employees, both appropriated and non-appropriated
- Contractors (if supporting in a contingency location outside the continental United States)
Sexual Assault Advocacy Reporting Options
The Air Force has instituted avenues for reporting sexual assault in the form of Restricted and Unrestricted Reporting.
Restricted Reporting: This reporting option allows sexual assault victims to confidentially disclose the assault to specified individuals (i.e., SARC, SAPR VA, Chaplains or healthcare personnel), and receive medical treatment, including emergency care, counseling, and assignment of a SARC and SAPR VA, without triggering an investigation. It is intended to give the victim (survivor) time and control over the release of their information. Further, it also empowers the survivor to make an informed decision about participating in the criminal process.
Unrestricted Reporting: This reporting option is any report of sexual assault made through normal reporting channels (for example: reports to chain of command, security forces, and/or Air Force Office of Investigation). This reporting option triggers an investigation, command notification, and allows a person who has been sexually assaulted to access medical treatment and counseling.
Independent Investigation: An official law enforcement investigation not initiated by a victim's report of sexual assault. An official (independent) investigation may be initiated based on independently acquired information, such as when a commander immediately notifies OSI or the appropriate MCIO with information about a sexual assault from a source other than the victim (victim may have filed a Restricted Report or where no report has been made by the victim), or from other sources to law enforcement (e.g., friend of the victim or witness to the crime).